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Course leader: Mrs A Scott

Aims of the course

The course will help you to develop your general study skills, but most of all you will learn to communicate at a higher level in French. You will also learn much more about a wide range of aspects of the society or societies in which the language is spoken.

Reading—You will be able to read, understand and extract information from written passages in the target language taken from authentic sources, such as magazines and newspapers, reports or books.

Listening—You will be able to listen to, and understand contemporary spoken language and answer questions on what you have heard. The passages that you will learn to listen to will be taken from a range of sources such as news reports on the radio or TV, weather forecasts, announcements, interviews and discussions.

Speaking and Writing—You will learn how to write essays or longer pieces and to hold conversations and discussions in the target language. You will learn all the appropriate grammar, words and phrases that will help you to:

  • Present information in the target language
  • Organise your argument
  • Provide opinions and justify them
  • Analyse your ideas

What are lessons like?

All lessons are held in specialised language classrooms.
Audio and visual equipment is available.

Course content

Year 12 Topics

  • Aspects of French speaking society
  • The changing nature of the family
  • The cyber society
  • The place of voluntary work in society
  • Political and artistic culture
  • French music
  • Cinema (with in-depth study of one film)

Year 13 topics

  • Contemporary French society
  • Right to vote
  • Demonstration and strikes
  • Politics and immigration
  • Diversity and marginalisation
  • Crime and punishment

How students will be assessed

Year 13

Paper 1: Listening, Reading & Writing – 2hrs 30 minutes, 50% of final marks.
Paper 2: Cultural essay - 2 hours, 20% of final mark. Topic - 1 book and 1 film.
Paper 3: Speaking exam - 23 minutes, 30% of marks. Topic - Aspects of French society, political and artistic culture + a presentation on a Francophone subject of their choice.

Recommended additional reading:

Atelier Grammarian - Malcolm Hope, Betty Hunt
France in the New Century - John Ardagh

Where can this course lead to?

Learning another language can boost your job prospects as never before. For as well as traditional careers such as teaching, interpreting and translating, there are plenty of jobs for language specialists in industry and commerce.

Languages can boost your pay as well as your prospects: research shows that linguists’ salaries are on average 8% higher than workers without language skills.

[Career Mail: Daily Mail Thursday February 28 2012]

This course will be essential to anyone wishing to study French at degree level. Guidance on which course and where to study is also available.

Why study French at St Mary’s College Sixth Form?

A Level French is for you, if you:

  • are interested in people and want to be able to talk to them in their language
  • are creative
  • want to be able to express your opinions and ideas
  • want to explore the language in more detail than at GCSE
  • want to become fluent in another language
  • want to take part in debates and discussions in French
  • want to use IT
  • want to learn more about a wide range of subjects and issues that are important today
  • want good career and travel opportunities in the future